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The Plague of Push Button Marketing.

Its really easy to put a Facebook Like button on a website or on print marketing. In fact it has become a de facto standard to put social media icons on everything. But what does this really do for the consumer or the brand?

Can we just make it a given that every major brand is on Twitter and Facebook? If I am truly a brand advocate, I will seek out the brand online and engage with it. All this advertising to push a Like button is lazy marketing. Why should the consumer pick up a single finger to help a brand?  Instead of focusing on creating value for the consumer, we have debased it down to making the consumer do the work of pushing a button. Buttons can be found on direct mail pieces, billboards, and on post-roll, so what are we supposed to do, be so inspired by seeing a non-interactive button in the analog world and run to our computers or phones to “like” a brand on Facebook!?!

The popularity of push button marketing exists because it makes social media and online engagement easy to understand for a brand, because it stops differentiating itself from traditional marketing methods that have been used for decades. It’s easy to measure how many people have liked your brand, and brand can go back to blasting messages to the passive consumer just as they did before with traditional media.

On my wall or in my mailbox what’s the difference?

All we have done is replace direct mail with wall posts. Using social media does not make a company innovative. All the Like button has become is an “Opt-in” button to get social media spam from brands. Using push button marketing is like a Staples easy button for marketing executives. Need a social media strategy? Just put social media buttons on everything you do, now that was easy.

Clearly there are many brands out there who are getting things right when it comes to using emerging media and who know that this isn’t just about push button marketing. Unfortunately for most companies the more things change the more they stay the same, watch the video below and think about how the plague of push button marketing changes the conversation…I don’t think it does.